Atkins was WRONG!

by: Sayed Farah سايد فرح

After consulting with several clients, friends, the general public on social media, I decided to go against their recommendation and not to include any references in my upcoming book as I want the book to be more of a “how-to” guide sort of manifesto. Trust me when I say this, I can include no less than 800 cherry-picked studies as references that support my claims. Tell you what, I’ll list references on my website for anyone interested.

People do not know what’s good for them otherwise you won’t find anyone overweight. What’s the point of getting into cell biology details that holders of triple PhDs in medical science are still arguing about? What difference does it make what “AMPK” (5′ adenosine monophosphate-activated protein kinase) is if you know exactly what you need to do to get the results you desire? Do you really need more controversial scientific matters to think about?

It’s very sad that science is being used to persuade us what makes us sick is good for us rather than science to be used to figure out why what works works.

We have a saying in my part of the world that translates into “Do you want the grapes or do you want to kill the farm’s nightguard?” which really applies to life in general. People please, just get the grapes. Well, you can eat grapes only on weekends when you follow the lifestyle I recommend.

Atkins was WRONG!

The cyclical ketogenic diet has been around forever so I won’t claim any credit for coming up with something new. What I hope I’ll be remembered for is convincing people to follow it as a lifestyle instead of a temporary diet and my recommendation to include fats on the weekends which makes the lifestyle perfect.

Diets eventually fail but lifestyles, especially the “Smart Protocol” that I recommend, never fail. A friend passes away midweek, your investment in the stock market collapses, you don’t get a promotion you were relying on to improve your financial situation, you fail an exam, your spouse wants a divorce, or whatever. Life happens and we sometimes get into sabotage modes. We get sad and in no mood to eat our usual weekdays’ meals. No problem, you can either fast or cheat and get back to your lifestyle at the start of the following week or the one after that.

Diets eventually fail but lifestyles, especially the “Smart Protocol” that I recommend, never fail.

It can’t be simpler, the human body is designed to survive the times of deprivation not to survive the times of plenty. You do not eat for a couple of days and your energy levels increase so that you can survive. You become more alert light and fast. When you finally find food you consume large quantities. Your body stores the incoming energy in the muscles and very little in the adipose tissue initially so that the energy is available for the next hunt or to be able to climb the next fruit tree you find a few days later.

If we remain in the fed state for several days, an ancient signaling system gets triggered. A system that prepares mammals for hibernation. We humans do not hibernate but we share a good part of the genetic sequence of mammals that do. This system when triggered sends instructions throughout the body to prepare for hibernation. Dump the muscles and increase the reliable long-term energy source, fats. We do not hibernate and burn the fat, we keep on eating and get obese and sick.

The Smart Protocol

A little-known fact is that bodybuilders and marathon runners store larger amounts of fat INSIDE their muscles. All mammals and birds do. Didn’t you ever notice the white marbling inside a beef chop? The meat is the animal’s muscle and the white marbling is fat. One of the biggest mistakes I did in the past, and so many people still do, is to avoid fat on the weekends.

If you follow my work you should know about my Nutrient Partitioning Spectrum theory. People towards the purple end of the Nutrient Partitioning Spectrum, great partitioners, who insist to disrespect the design and eat the 5-6 meals per day with the oatmeal breakfast (the rice &chicken breast nation) should avoid fats. It will work for them, well, until it doesn’t anymore. However, you my fellow Smart Life-styler friends can and should eat fats on the weekends. If you are metabolically on the other side of the spectrum, towards the red side, that is, you turn skinny-fat when you follow the regular American diet, then my Smart Protocol is the only system that will give you a great body composition.

The bits and pieces of info stuck in the back of our heads, that we collected over our lifetimes from articles we read or from general health advice we heard from our grammas or aunties do not apply here. Saturated fat does reduce insulin sensitivity of your muscles and mess up nutrient partitioning when consumed with carbs and cause so many health issues but only when consumed for several days in a row.

Urine Ketone Measurement

After 5 to 6 days of fasting-mimicking, the nutrient partitioning is restored to an optimum state and you MUST eat big. Yours truly and several others have noticed that carbs do not “stick” when no substantial amount of fat is consumed with the carbs. By sticking I mean the muscles do not fill up. Let’s forget for a minute the intramuscular fat storage capacity and focus on glycogen. The mainstream fitness experts, even the keto/low-carb/intermittent fasting advocates, believe that in healthy individuals when insulin rises the muscles automatically store glycogen.

carbs do not “stick” when no substantial amount of fat is consumed with the carbs

I challenge that belief and without getting into silly arguments and the bro-science “rationales”. I believe the intestines have a very advanced sensory system that recognizes the composition of what we consume and sends signals to other organs to prepare for what’s coming.

Atkins and everyone else got it wrong. The only people that came close were the infamous Daniel Duchaine and Tim Ferris but still, they got it wrong. I won’t be discussing Tim Ferris in this article and I’ll get to Dr. Atkins in a minute, let’s start with Duchaine.

One of the mistakes in Duchaine’s Body Opus was to assume that the intestines are passive and absorb whatever is thrown at them at a certain rate. He compared glucose and insulin given intravascularly to them consumed. He couldn’t have been more wrong. Most people who tried his weekend “carb-up” recommendations abandoned the Body Opus. I said most so how about the rest? Well, yours truly is the rest. That is if there are no others who stumbled upon the same conclusion. Eating lots of fats with the carbs on the weekend and reducing the carb-loading phase from 2 days to 1 day is the secret that made the system work. The mixture of monounsaturates and saturates made the carbs stick as glycogen and the muscles fill up.

Daniel Duchaine

The other big mistake of Duchaine, besides his horrible weekend carb-loading recommendations, was to present the beautiful Body Opus as a diet, not a permanent lifestyle.

Your favorite physique athletes on Instagram, even the ones following cyclical ketogenic lifestyles, are on the purple end of the spectrum, that is they do not even need to follow the lifestyle (yet). So if they can fill up nicely on low fat/high carb (clean) meals you won’t. You NEED the fat. For you, it’s a hit-and-run approach or a short window of opportunity if you will.

Back to Doctor Atkins, the biggest mistake the good doctor made was to let people “reintroduce” carbs to their daily lives. As you should know by now, we, the people on the red end of the spectrum, simply can’t do that. The partitioning will deteriorate quickly and the body composition will follow suit. Both prolonged Keto stretches and consuming carbs for more than 24 to 48 consecutive hours per week and you’ll start moving in the wrong direction. The long Keto stretches will negatively impact insulin sensitivity. Our beautifully designed system adapts to prevent blood glucose to drop under a certain level. The leaner we are the more resistant to insulin our muscle cells become. The explanation is simple: there’s not enough glycerol coming from mobilized body fat for the liver to make glucose. “Keto” can Never work as a permanent lifestyle.

The conclusion of the last paragraph is that neither keto, low carb, or regular carb-cycling will work as a lifestyle for bad partitioners, that is people suffering from syndrome X. The only thing that will work is the Smart Protocol.

In a nutshell, the Smart Lifestyle protocol is 6 days of fasting-mimicking followed by a day of all you can eat. Then you repeat. Of course, there are a few simple rules to follow and there are variations. I will teach you everything I discovered. That’s my promise. That’s my mission.

Listen to the article on Apple Podcasts

Listen to the article on Google Podcasts

Listen to the article on Spotify

Listen on Other Platforms

Image Photo سايد فرح Amman Post by Sayed Farah Podcast